Janelle In Real Life: a birth story


a birth story

Remember how I had a baby almost 3 months ago and promised a birth story? It's been sitting in my drafts forever and I decided it was time to just publish the thing. So here you go.

Oh, how I love to read birth stories. I don't know why, but it's literally one of the most addicting things for me to read other people's birth stories. Maybe because everyone's is just a little bit different but still so relatable.
last bump shot!
On Saturday January 24th (4 days before the little guy's due date) I started having contractions while at a salon appointment. They weren't very strong or regular, so I had every intention of going about my day as usual. A few hours later they were happening more often but didn't really feel more intense so I continued believing this probably wasn't "the day." I did think that I should probably pack my hospital bag just incase though, because oops, I still hadn't done that. While I was gathering stuff up to put in my bag the contractions got significantly more painful and closer together.
With my first I labored for 21 hours before having him, so I was prepared for another long labor with this one. This time around, I hoped to labor at home for a good amount of time so I could be more comfortable in my own home and not have to sit in a hospital bed with monitors on for hours and hours. So we waited and I timed contractions. They were mostly between 2-4 minutes apart for a few hours, but there were a few times that contractions came more like 10 minutes apart so I wanted to keep waiting before getting to the hospital.
I decided I wanted to wait until after we put my son down to bed so that he wouldn't be upset we were leaving him with a babysitter. His bedtime is around 7:45 and I was in sooooo much pain by that point. I was having to moan and breathe deeply through contractions to deal with the pain and my toddler thought I was being so hilarious. We put him to bed & called my aunt who lived 30 minutes away to come watch him.
While we waited for her to get to our house I continued to breathe & moan through really painful contractions and it was HARD. I was also convinced that I wouldn't be very dilated since with my last I labored for most of a day and was only dilated to 3 cm when I got to the hospital. I didn't want to get my hopes up that I would be ready to have the baby that night.

We got to the hospital & it took forever for us to get from the parking lot up to Labor & Delivery since I was having to stop & breathe through every contraction on the way there and they were coming every 1 1/2-2 minutes. We got checked in & sent to a room and the nurse checked my dilation... I was at a 6! This was very exciting to me because the pain was crazy and I was really hoping it meant labor was progressing well. I hadn't even been officially admitted yet and they started getting things ready for the birth, got me an IV and asked about pain management. I was was in so much pain and was so incredibly exhausted from labor by this point that I wanted to go ahead and get an epidural to help my body rest for pushing. I was dilated to 7 cm when the anesthesiologist came in to give me the epidural.
After the epidural was in, it was pretty smooth sailing. Only about an hour passed before it was time for me to push! And I could not believe that this baby was coming tonight. We had brought the ipad to watch Netflix on and books to read because we were thinking it would be like last time (12 hours in the hospital before he was born). Instead, less than 2 hours after getting there we were having this baby! The doctor came in when it was time to push and I began pushing through the first contraction. I started tearing so the doctor did an episiotomy to help get baby out (and I'm glad he did because I tore a lot less this time). The second push got baby's head out and push number three got the rest of his little body!

We named him Nathan Kurt Reeves (his middle name is after my brother who passed away as a baby).
He came out screaming and the doctor laid him on my chest right away. He got cleaned up a little and then we got to do skin to skin before they did any of the weighing or measuring which was pretty wonderful. With our first he had some breathing problems and had to go to the NICU for a little while so I didn't get to experience that instant bonding until this time around. It was such a sweet moment to be there with my husband and this new little baby! Hubby took pictures while I got stitched up and then we just got to hang out with this screamy little boy for a while.

The epidural wore off pretty quickly after, which meant I wasn't bed ridden for quite so long. We ended up only staying in the hospital for about 36 hours because we were both doing great and I really just wanted my recovery to be in the comfort of my own home.

My mom and sister came to stay with us for 5 days to help out and between the two of them and my husband I felt so taken care of! I basically had to nurse constantly as many mothers do in those first weeks, so having family there to help take care of my toddler, and make dinners, and clean the house was amazing.

The little guy and I struggled with breastfeeding for the first few weeks... he was a very vigorous eater, and we had some latch issues so I was in a lot of pain. We saw a lactation consultant which sort of helped, but really I think it just took time. I also developed mastitis THREE TIMES which was kiiiind of the worst. In addition to that, my toddler, newborn, and I all came down with a cold, boooo. We braved through it though and things are much better!
Overall, the birth was such a good experience! Less time spent in the hospital was so nice, even though I felt so weird moaning through contractions with my toddler watching. I also labored for about 8 hours total this time as opposed to 21 with my first! But regardless of how he came into the world, I am so glad he did. We have so much love for this new little family member!


  1. Aw, this was written so beautifully! And that picture of you holding him is absolutely precious! Congrats!


  2. glad you had a easy deliver.